New Creative Cloud Applications are Coming. What You Need to Know.

Let’s  think back for a moment to the days of Creative Suite. Every 12 to 24 months, depending up the release, Adobe would announce and ship new versions of its creative software. It was left to the users to decide if they wanted to buy the upgrade or not and when. In 2012 Adobe announced Creative Cloud while simultaneously continuing the sale of Creative Suite on a perpetually licensed basis. After what amounted to a one year experiment, a decision was made to move to a subscription only plan. Part of the promise of that plan was faster rollout of new features and the inclusion of new versions of the applications all at a set monthly price.

For the past year, Adobe has kept the promise of new features, steadily rolling out improvements, and on June 18, they will be webcasting the announcement of their newest release of Creative Cloud. That’s right, all new versions of your favorite Adobe applications such as InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator and Muse. The reason for this post is to alert you to the fact that this coming and to explain the difference between this and the past Creative Cloud updates.

In a webcast scheduled for June 18, Adobe will be revealing the next generation of Creative Cloud.

In a webcast scheduled for June 18, Adobe will be revealing the next generation of Creative Cloud.

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Digital Publishing Suite 101: How to Hide a Slideshow

Creating a slideshow using InDesign for a Digital Publishing Suite (DPS) folio is done using multi state objects (MSOs). One of the choices in the folio overlays panel for slideshows is to Hide Before Playing. At first glance this would be of good use when you don’t want your content to show. But once the slideshow is played, there’s no way to hide it again. So, what to do when you want to be able to not only show content in a slideshow but also hide it?

The answer is actually quite simple. Because each state in an MSO can contain just about anything, we’re going to add a state to our MSO that to your reader, looks like nothing. Let’s see how it’s done.

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My First lynda.com Title, Adobe Digital Publishing Suite Essential Training, is Live!

I’m proud to announce that my first lynda.com course is now live. The title, which shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, is Adobe Digital Publishing Suite Essential Training. If you’re just starting out with, or if you just want to get an overview of DPS and how it works with InDesign and other Creative Cloud applications such as Muse and Edge Animate, this course is for you. While I cover some of the back end information, this course, at its core, is an overview of how to create and work with interactive overlays. I tried to throw a tip or two in each lesson and hope you’ll find it a good starting point with DPS.

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Digital Publishing Suite 101: Using Transparent Edge Animate Files with PDF Folios

The latest version of Edge Animate was released recently and one of the new features was the ability to save with a transparent poster image. That was a great addition but when I tried to place the OAM file in InDesign and tested it out, I still had a black background.

acv

I did a bit of digging and found out the transparent background only works on PNG and JPG articles. I always use PDF format for folios so rasterizing everything was not something I wanted to do. Then I remembered a post on the User to User forums a while back with a great tip on how to get this working on PDF folios.

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Why Creative Cloud Subscription Software is Here to Stay

Adobe has gone all in with Creative Cloud. Do you really understand what that means?

Love it or hate it, Creative Cloud is not going away. It’s time to deal with it.

It’s been more than six months since Adobe announced that it was going to a subscription-only business model for its Creative Suite applications while rebranding them under the Creative Cloud name. Today, there’s still a very vocal group of people blasting Adobe for that decision. I’ve had a few debates (okay, more than a few) about the topic and  I’m using this post to spell out why I believe that those waiting for Adobe to back down and offer perpetual licenses will not get what they want. The post isn’t so much about defending Adobe—though I do think they have a right to run their business any way they see fit—but to explain why I think they moved to this business model and why it won’t be reversed.

The idea for this post started when I was asked why I’m fighting those that are against Adobe and Creative Cloud. The fact is, I’m not fighting anyone or anything; I’m just looking at the reality of the situation and the current climate in the software industry. More choices would, in theory, be better. But in practice those choices would cost Adobe millions of dollars. Two licensing models and thousands of SKUs for suites and individual products doesn’t come cheap and it most certainly doesn’t carry with it a guarantee of any return on that investment.

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Adobe Extends Creative Cloud Photoshop and Lightroom Program to All

In September Adobe announced a special loyalty offer for Photoshop CS3 and later customers. The offer combined Photoshop and Lightroom along with a few other goodies such as online storage and a Behance Pro website for $9.99/month. Many professional photographers jumped on this but it left academic license owners and suite owners feeling left out in the cold.

Along with some other goodies, Adobe has put together a difficult to resist Creative Cloud offering for photographs featuring Lightroom and Photoshop.

Adobe has extended its Photoshop/Lightoom offer to all users from now until 9:00AM PST on December 2.

Many of you spoke loudly and clearly and Adobe has responded by opening this program up to everyone for a very limited time. Beginning today and lasting until December 2, there is no eligibility requirement at all to take advantage of this offer.

Update on December 6. It looks like this offer has been extended to December 31

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Digital Publishing Suite 101: Quick Tips for Scrollable Frames

Scrollable frames in Digital Publishing Suite is one of my favorite features. In addition to being able to stuff two pounds of potatoes into a one pound sack, it adds to the interactivity giving the user a more engaging experience. Of course like everything else in InDesign and DPS, they’re not without their limitations. I’ve put together a list of quick tips to help you use them successfully.

  • Add a text frame inset on the bottom and top of any autofit frame to avoid having descenders and ascenders cut off. I’ve found 5-8 pixel is usually enough.

frame insets

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Photographers Get Their Wish: A Photoshop/Lightroom Creative Cloud Package

Ever since Adobe announced its new subscription only policy in May one of the most vocal groups has been photographers. Almost immediately, Adobe began to promise to look for solutions for this group. This was met with a large degree of skepticism but it’s now official, as announced at Photoshop World 2013, Adobe has put together a special Creative Cloud package aimed squarely at Photographers.

Along with some other goodies, Adobe has put together a difficult to resist Creative Cloud offering for photographs featuring Lightroom and Photoshop.

Along with some other goodies, Adobe has put together a difficult to resist Creative Cloud offering for photographers featuring Lightroom and Photoshop.

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Creative Cloud Introductory Pricing for Students and Teachers is Back

Adobe-Creative-Cloud-LogoIt’s back to school time and Adobe isn’t being left behind on special offers for students and teachers. Until the end of October, eligible students and teachers can get the first year of Creative Cloud for only $19.99/month. That’s a savings of 33% over the regular academic priceand a 60% savings over the commercial price.

As I’ve pointed out in the past this is, in my opinion, and fantastic deal for anyone eligible for it. In the scheme of things, especially for students, comparing this to other costs is just a blip on the radar. Cell phones, text books, tuition and even a couple of trips to Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts will be more than this.

This deal does require a one year commitment but it allows for commercial work so a student or teacher could, in addition to learning the applications, use them to earn a few bucks.

In addition to buying directly from Adobe, you can purchase from any number of retailers including Amazon.

Digital Publishing Suite 101: Keep Text Sharp in Raster Slideshows

One of my favorite new features in Digital Publishing Suite over the last year or so was the addition of raster/vector settings for PDF formatted overlays. Before that, all overlays were rasterized…even if the folio was created using the PDF format. Because of that, text contained in an overlay tended to look a bit pixelated, especially on a retina iPads.

In case you’re not sure what I’m referring to here, let’s take a quick look at how this works and then we’ll talk about the pros and cons of vector and raster overlays. In the screenshot below, I have an multi state object selected in InDesign and Folio Overlays panel open to the slideshow pane. From there I can choose whether to use raster or vector format.

With an MSO selected you'll be able choose your slideshow options from the Folio Overlays panel

With an MSO selected you’ll be able choose your slideshow options from the Folio Overlays panel

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